31 May 2018 – Setting off reasonably early at the top of the Hatton flight, we soon reached the link connecting the Grand Union canal to the Stratford canal. This is a very pretty canal and very rural. The locks and bridges are very narrow and we had the fenders up most of the way. The result is a very scuffed and scraped boat. We did the first 18 locks and stopped at Wootton wawen for the night. Beautiful.
1 June 2018 – We had intended to complete the second phase into Stratford basin today but the locks are very hard work and after the first flight of 11, I had had enough and needed a well deserved rest. We moored only 2 miles from Stratford and got the bikes off the back of the boat and rode into town to check everything out. Stratford basin is quite stunning, directly next to the RSC theatre. You can stay for 2 nights for free!
2 June 2018 – Up early and a fill up with water and we were off to do the 5 locks into the basin. These locks were tight and very cramped going under modern bridges that barely gave head room. Lock 49 had a group of Russians next to it which for some reason I found intimidating. It was only 10am and they were drinking a lot. (Someone must have complained and 2 police arrived to move them on.) The last lock and a sharp right bend and one last very low bridge and we arrived in this surreal place. We got a mooring and settled down for the stay. The towns shops are so close and this really is a tourist centre. We left the boat for 5 minutes and we had Chinese visitors sat on the back deck. We had a photo session lol.
This sunny period is lovely and the temperature, like yesterday, is getting hotter. I arrange to get a ticket to see King Lear on Monday night and by using the £30 xmas voucher from R&D and claiming a sixties discount I paid only £8 extra. Deal!